Three unusual facts about pregnancy

February 23, 2012 2:14 PM by

Long before deciding to start a family, most women have preconceptions about what it's like to be pregnant. From the basic concepts of gaining weight to the varying opinions on epidurals versus a natural birth, there are several elements of pregnancy that are frequently discussed and portrayed by the media. But what about some of those lesser-known facts? If you're expecting, be ready for the unexpected.

A sixth sense?
There are many myths that revolve around predicting the gender of the baby, including the frequently referenced carrying low or high test. Most people realize these fall into the realm of old wives' tales as opposed to real science, but there may be one method that is more accurate than the rest. A study conducted by Johns Hopkins University found that women who had a dream or an intuition that revealed the gender of their baby often made an accurate prediction. Maybe expecting moms develop higher powers during those special nine months.

Can bad dreams be good omens?
Many women experience vivid dreams while they're pregnant and for some these nighttime reveries can be rather terrifying. Although bad dreams may leave you feeling a bit on edge, they may actually bode well for your delivery. A study conducted by the gynecological department at the University of Messina found that women who had violent dreams during pregnancy tended to experience shorter labors.

Are parts of your baby left behind after delivery?
Scientists have found that fetal cells can become integrated into the mother's body as they move across the placenta. They tend to settle down in the mom's lungs, blood vessels and intestines. A study conducted by the University Lille Nord-de-France found that fetal cells can prove beneficial for the mother's body by helping to repair damaged tissue and transferring some of the father's beneficial genetics.

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